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Dhaka Tribune

Upazila Elections: Awami League focused on ensuring good voter turnout

  • Party leaders to distribute leaflets for general voters
  • EC says no chance of violence
Update : 24 Apr 2024, 10:30 AM

The ruling party, Awami League, is focused on ensuring a good voter turnout in the upcoming series of Upazila Parishad elections.

On Tuesday afternoon, Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader sat with the party's central leaders and top leaders of its associate bodies, where he instructed everyone regarding this matter.

In the meeting, senior leaders of Awami League handed over a bundle of leaflets to leaders of its associate bodies, which narrated why voting is important and why general voters should go to the polling booths in the upcoming countrywide election.

While speaking with Dhaka Tribune, some central leaders of Awami League anonymously said that in the last couple of elections, there was a low voter turnout across the country, whether the election was local or national.

Realizing this issue, the ruling party high command is trying to ensure a good voter turnout in this upazila election. That's why this time, Awami League did not field any party candidate for this election and even discouraged party lawmakers' relatives from entering the electoral race to make the election more competitive.

While speaking with Dhaka Tribune, Afzalur Rahman Babu, general secretary of Awami Seccha Sebok League, a volunteer wing of Awami League, said: "Today we received leaflets from the central leaders and will distribute them across the country to inspire voters to cast their votes in the Upazila Election."

Daisy Sarowar, president of Jubo Mohila League, a women's wing of Awami League, said: "Our leaders and activists from the central to ward levels have received instructions to distribute these leaflets nationwide so that voters can realize why they should go to the polling centres. We will showcase the development works of the Awami League government led by our Party President Sheikh Hasina to attract voters in these local elections."

During the meeting with journalists, Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Qader urged the countrymen to exercise their constitutional rights in the upcoming Upazila polls.

He also mentioned that vested quarters are active in the country, demotivating general voters from casting their votes.

Awami League Presidium Members Matia Chowdhury, Kazi Zafrullah, Abdur Razzqaue, and Kamrul Islam, as well as Joint General Secretary Mahbubul Alam Hanif and AFM Bahauddin Nasim, among others, were present at the meeting.

Abdus Sobhan Golap, publicity and publication secretary of Awami League, presided over the meeting.

EC says no chance of violence

The Election Commission (EC) on Tuesday said it does not see any threat of violence centring on the upcoming Upazila Parishad polls.

Responding to a question from journalists, the Election Commission Secretary Md Jahangir Alam said that according to the reports of intelligence agencies, there will be no violence this year and the polls will be competitive. 

Many are participating without their party symbols. Additionally, multiple candidates from a single party have opted to boycott the election, yet some of their supporters are still actively participating in the polls.

He mentioned that the deployment of law enforcement personnel, including Border Guard Bangladesh, will exceed that of the national election for the upcoming upazila polls.

Mentioning that any citizen can legally participate in the election, the Election Commission secretary said the Awami League has forbidden many family members of their public representatives from participating in the polls.

“It's not a law, it's a party decision. Legally, any citizen can be a candidate,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Election Commission has decided to postpone the Upazila Parishad elections in Thanchi, Rowangchhari, and Ruma upazilas of Bandarban due to ongoing joint law enforcement operations.

The commission will reschedule the elections for these three upazilas at a more convenient time.    

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